Words and Music by Jack Lawrence & Marguerite Monnot
Some Of The Best Recordings
Heard On Screen
For sheet music contact: www.halleonard.com
The Story Behind The Song
Marguerite Monnot was a famous French songwriter who had written practically every Edith Piaf hit, including this one. The American publisher who acquired it called me from the west coast to say he was sending me a demo instrumental and wanted me to write an English lyric. He said the song was titled: "Pauvre Gens de Paris".
Well, in my high school French that translated as "Poor People of Paris". Immediately I started thinking of lines I could use to make this an ironic satire: "those poor French people who had nothing to live on but love and wine and love and music!" So when the demo arrived I was ready and started to create the lyric above.
Imagine my chagrin when I finally got a copy of Ms. Monnot's original French and it read: Pauvre JEAN de Paris! Poor Jon! Not Poor PEOPLE! However I can't be faulted.
JEAN and GENS are pronounced alike in French. Fortunately, the publisher liked my amusing lyric and this is what this hit has remained through he years. You'll get a kick listening to the fun Crosby and Clooney had recording their duet.
Copyright © 2005 Jack Lawrence. All Rights Reserved.